The Prime Minister's Rural Development Fellowship (PMRDF) is an initiative of the Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) Government of India (GoI), implemented in collaboration with State Governments. The scheme is currently not active.
The PMRD Fellowship is anchored in the twin goals of providing short-term catalytic support to the district administration in underdeveloped, isolated and remote areas of the country to improve programme delivery and interface with the marginalized sections of the population, as well as developing a cadre of committed and competent development leaders and facilitators, who are available as a resource for rural development over the long term.
The PMRDF Scheme is executed and supervised by several institutions and organisations. They are
- The Council for Advancement of People's Action and Rural Technology (CAPART), an autonomous institution under the Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India is the administering agency; responsible for personnel related matters of the Fellows and engagement of agencies.
- The Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) is the knowledge partner; responsible for recruitment, orientation, academic programme, on-field mentorship and other support to the Fellows.
- The Rural Development Department of the States is the nodal agencies in their respective States.
- The District Collectors are responsible for supervising the work of Fellows in the field and their immediate well-being.
Role of Prime Minister’s Rural Development Fellows
To begin with, the Fellows would need to spend time and effort in understanding the historical, geo- physical, agro - ecological, social and economic contexts of the district.
The Fellows will have mainly the following functions:
- Work with institutions of the poor to build their capacity and help them access their rights and entitlements.
- Facilitate capacity building in Self -Help Groups (SHGs), and in institutions of local democracy, like panchayats.
- Conduct socio -economic analysis of the local areas at Block level and contribute in ascertaining the felt needs of the people.
- Help the district administration in local area planning.
- Assist in better implementation of poverty alleviation programmes, particularly MGNREGA, NRLM, National Rural Drinking Water Programme, NBA, IWMP, NSAP, IAP, ICDS, NRHM SSA/RMSA etc.
- Undertake action -research to discover more appropriate ways of programme delivery by the district administration
- Design and implement innovative projects.
- Provide feedback on rural development initiatives.
Tenure of Fellowship
- The duration of Fellowship under the PMRDF shall be for a total period of two years and shall include an orientation period not exceeding three months.
- The Fellows shall be required to accept the terms and conditions governing the Fellowship contract through an agreement with NRLPS and subscribe to such agreement with regard to their Fellowship.
Eligibility to be considered as a PMRD Fellow
The eligibility criteria for selection as a Fellow shall be the following:
A. Essential criteria:
- Should be a citizen of India.
- Age between 22 – 27 years at the time of application. For candidates belonging to SC/ST category, the maximum age limit will be 32 years.
- At least a graduate from a recognized University with a four - year degree course, including those like Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Engineering, Law, Medicine etc., or a post – graduate from a recognized University(in case of a graduate holding degree of a course duration of less than four years). It is clarified that a one year post graduate course will also be considered valid for eligibility if it is regular, full time and if the degree/equivalent diploma is recognized by the AICTE/MCI/UGC.
- At least 50% marks in the aggregate or equivalent grade at the graduate or Post - graduate level , whichever is qualifying.
- Physical fitness, certified by Government Medical Hospital, for the arduous nature of the work
B. Desirable criteria:
- Knowledge of local language and customs.
- Work experience in related fields.
- Excellence in extra - curricular activities like art, culture, sports etc. at High School/College level.
- Leadership role in high school/ college/ work place.
Reservation: 15% seats are reserved for Scheduled Castes and 15% for Scheduled Tribes.
Any candidate, who has been provisionally selected in the final result sheet for PMRD Fellowship, will not be allowed to avail the fellowship if he/she did not complete the full term of Fellowship in their earlier stint as a PMRD Fellow.
Applications for selection of Fellows shall be sought through public advertisements. Interested applicants shall be required to submit their application as per the format notified by the Central Government. There will be a three stage selection process which includes -
- All India Competency Assessment Test (AICAT) (online )
- Written Test - Issue based
- Personal Interview
Source: Prime Minister's Rural Development Fellows